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Marina van Geenhuizen, J. Adam Holbrook and Mozhdeh Taheri

This chapter presents the theme, theoretical approaches and overview of the chapters in the book. The theme is the contribution of cities (their actors) to increased sustainability in social-technical systems, eventually by accelerating sustainability improvements. The selected systems are energy, transport and healthcare. Cities may act as the cradle of key inventions, as places of up-scaling and commercialization and as places of quick adoption, though few individual cities take up all these roles. Next, several urban innovation theories are introduced, including agglomeration and cluster theories, and the relational (collaboration) approach, with the aim to ‘position’ the chapters. Specific attention is given to the entrepreneurial ecosystem approach. Complementary approaches are institutional and governance perspectives, in particular with respect to cities acting as institutional innovators. A final approach is the evolutionary approach, as invention, up-scaling, commercialization and adoption of new technology are concerned with long time-lines and manifold uncertainties.

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Brian Pusser

This chapter presents an overview of a state-theoretical approach to understanding the politics of higher education. It presents a historical review of critical theories of the state, with particular attention to contest and hegemony. The civil society is also addressed in historical perspective, with analysis of citizenship, institutional and market forces, and the nature of public and private action within the civil society. Attention is also turned to interests and formations beyond the civil society, to the role of social movements in state contest, to the distinction between the state and government, and to the role of power in understanding contest. The history of scholarship on the politics of higher education is reviewed, with a particular focus on critical approaches and theories of the state. Each of the elements of the state-theoretical conceptual approach are linked to the understanding of education as a central state function, and to universities as political institutions of the state, with examples drawn from historical and contemporary political contests in higher education

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Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij

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Frank Vibert

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Edited by Jan van der Harst, Gerhard Hoogers and Gerrit Voerman

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Edited by Shelley Egoz, Karsten Jørgensen and Deni Ruggeri

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Lasse Gerrits and Stefan Verweij

We argue that infrastructure projects are complex and that evaluations of such projects need to do justice to that complexity. The three principal aspects discussed here are heterogeneity, uniqueness, and context. Evaluations that are serious about incorporating the complexity of projects need to address these aspects. Often, evaluations rely on single case studies. Such studies are useful because they allow researchers to focus on the heterogeneous, unique, and contextual nature of projects. However, their relevance for explaining other (future) projects is limited. Larger-n studies allow for the comparison of cases, but they come with the important downside that their relevance for explaining single projects is limited because they cannot incorporate heterogeneity, uniqueness, and context sufficiently. The method Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) presents a promising solution to this conundrum. This book offers a guide to using QCA when evaluating infrastructure projects.

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Peter A.G van Bergeijk and Selwyn J.V. Moons

Peter A.G. van Bergeijk and Selwyn Moons discuss the emergence of the concept of economic diplomacy in the fields of Accounting, Business Economics, Conflict Studies, Development Studies, International Economics, International Relations, International Trade, Management Science, Peace Science, Political Science and Public Finance. The focus should be on bilateral activities such as nation branding, trade missions, trade fairs and network activities of embassies and consulates and the impact of these tools on import, export and Foreign Direct Investment. The field should extend beyond the traditional boundaries of commercial diplomacy and business diplomacy and also cover the not-for-profit-sector, including universities and other knowledge institutes, the health sector, the cultural sector, NGO’s etc. One key finding for research is the need to consider significant heterogeneities with respect to (the efficacy of) instruments, countries, institutions levels of development and behavior and decision-making of firms.

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Brendan Cantwell, Hamish Coates and Roger King

This chapter introduces this Handbook on the Politics of Higher Education. It starts by advancing ideas and frames to position the following chapters, and then considers broad rationales for the book. The chapter closes by surveying the Handbook’s five parts, and providing a brief overview of the 28 chapters that follow.

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Frank Vibert

This introductory chapter establishes the book’s focus on the content of the rules for a contemporary constitution. It adopts the normative perspective of a democratic society. It discusses units of observation and levels of analysis and sets out a trans-disciplinary approach. It identifies key elements in subsequent analysis including motivation, social diversity, fairness, rationality and the emotive, and chains of intermediation. It introduces the key challenges involved in upgrading contemporary constitutions.